Building a Cub Mounted Wood Splitter
I have been preparing for this project for at least 3 years when I first thought about trying to make my life a little bit easier after the open heart surgery. Life since then has not been exactly what it was before. I am no longer able to do the stuff I used to do nor with the stamina/agility/ease I once could. So instead of being able to do hard work I now have to work smart. Part of working smart is minimizing the amount of stress on my body. That is where the splitter and a few other labour savers come in.
One of my original ideas was to mount the splitter horizontally similar to Bill Poor's setup:
but after some serious thought Ray and I decided that a vertical orientation would make a lot more sense and be a lot easier for one guy to mount the splitter when wood cutting season rolls around. Plus, there would be a lot less stress on Ellie and the finals. So.. vertical it is
Another consideration was that since we had two different tractors, Ray has Dad's Massey-Ferguson 1040, having the splitter compatible to both systems would be a good idea. That way if Ray needs the splitter he won't need to borrow Ellie, it will mount up to his 3 point on the Massey.
Armed with these thoughts in mind, fabrication started.
While I was contemplating this project I began accumulating the needed parts. As some things came available and as I had the funds for other items they got stockpiled until most of the parts were available. I got real luck a couple years ago.. was at Princess Auto -- which is my favourite department store and lucked into a slightly damaged 16 ton beam. Just the beam, but it was a start. I got it at a very decent price.. and nope.. ain't tellin
Shortly afterwards during an annual inventory we found a 3"x18" 3,000psi cylinder with the screw on yoke pins which are ideal for a splitter.
The Splitting Knife and Wedge was a bit more expensive, but I saved me pennies and grabbed one before they almost disappeared from the shelves. Shortly after I acquired mine they became essentially a discontinued item. I have seen one more lately but that is it. Not sure if they are going to be available again.. but I imagine that some of the other locations may have them as well as US chains similar to Princess such as Harbor Freight
and Northern Tools
One of the first things we needed to do was to figure out a mounting system for the cylinder as it really was not designed for a log splitter. Ray came up with a neat solution.
A section of 5" x 3" rectangular tubing with a slot to accomodate the I-beam web takes care of that
Slides right in.
Mount the cylinder to the Spliting Knife and Wedge, a couple wedges to centre the tubing, setup to determine where the tail flange has to be.
Weld the end cap to the tubing.
Next, setup the 1" broach in the mag drill to bore the aft cylinder mounting hole.
The mag drill is something Ray got to work on the signs that he builds and installs. Really handy rig and very portable.
When this thing starts it is amazing to see how quickly and neatly it gets the job done.
And a nice slug is all that is left after the broach is finished.
Tack weld it in place.
Then finish the weld ensuring all edges are buttoned up nicely. Take time, make sure that the steel doesn't twist/curl/rack.
Weld in the gusset. It will be trimmed in a bit.
This pretty much finishes up the basic fabrication needed to mount the cylinder to the beam. It also finished up our first day of playing with the splitter project. Since Ray has a business to run, weekends or evenings depending on when he is done is when we get to play at fabricating stuff. We got lucky and were able to get back to work on this project 2 days later and managed to get the next bit done.
Part of the problem is that Ray's MF 1040 is 3 point and a Cub is well.. not exactly
but surprisingly it wasn't as big a problem to overcome as I kinda feared. Ray had thought this out and had a pretty good idea how to do it. We talked it over and then started the second phase of fabrication.
The next pic is of the drawbar assembly for Ray's MF 1040:
The mag drill and broach again to drill the plates for the lift arms and for the top link bracket. The plates which will form the lift arm brackets are 2-3/8" x 5" x 3/8" steel plate with 1" dia. holes 1-1/4" oc from the end of the bracket.
Weld the end caps on and insert the lift arm pins on the drawbar.
Lay out, apply a little heat and
Voila! the top link bracket.
Here it is mounted up to the MF 1040
This ends the first part of the fabrication process. The next phase is to create the drawbar assembly brackets for Ellie and the rockshaft mounting point. This will be Building a Cub Mounted Wood Splitter - Part 2